Mastercard has participated in the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) and the Digital Finance Cooperative Research Centre’s (DFCRC) central bank digital currency (CBDC) pilot project, showing positive results.
Mastercard has reported that, in a joint CBDC pilot project conducted by the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) and the Digital Finance Cooperative Research Centre (DFCRC), its wrapped CBDC technology had demonstrated interoperability with different blockchains. It was successfully used by authorized parties safely and securely, with implemented controls even on public blockchains.
Mastercard’s new solution enables CBDCs to be tokenised (“wrapped”) onto different blockchains. Besides that, it ensures that the wrapped CBDC can be held, used, and redeemed only by authorised parties. Disregarding the nature of blockchain (public or private), it implements access controls. Therefore, only those parties that have been Know Your Customer (KYC) verified and risk assessed by licensed service providers can leverage the pilot digital currency.
Mainly, the project aims to explore potential use cases for a CBDC in Australia, but the underlying technology can be potentially utilized beyond the country’s borders.
The interoperability solution was developed in partnership with Cuscal and Mintable. It leverages the capabilities of Mastercard’s Multi Token Network and Mastercard Crypto Credential system. Together, these technologies enable more efficient payment and commerce applications on the blockchain, supported by common verification standards across all supported payment tokens and networks for safe and trusted transactions.
Within the trial, Mastercard demonstrated in a live environment how the holder of a pilot CBDC can purchase an NFT listed on the Ethereum public blockchain leveraging the proposed solution. The required amount of a pilot CBDC on the RBA’s pilot CBDC platform was “locked.” Simultaneously, the interoperability tool minted an equivalent amount of wrapped pilot CBDC tokens on Ethereum.
Importantly, the Ethereum wallets of both the buyer and seller, as well as the NFT marketplace smart contract itself, were all ‘allow-listed’ on the platform. All other unauthorized transfers of the wrapped pilot CBDC were blocked, even on public blockchains.
Mastercard Multi-Token Network is currently functioning in beta mode. It is tested by select financial institutions around the world, playing a key role in Mastercard’s wider strategy to expand the use of blockchain for payments among regulated entities.
Earlier, Mastercard launched a CBDC partner program with major blockchain players, including Ripple, Consensys, Fluency, Idemia, Consult Hyperion, Giesecke+Devrient and Fireblocks.